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Posted on Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 12:11 p.m.

Man who stabbed wife to death to serve 30-36 years in prison

By Kyle Feldscher

The 44-year-old Pittsfield Township man who admitted to stabbing his wife to death with multiple knives will serve between 30 and 36 years in prison, according to court records.


Jean-Pierre Trias

Courtesy of the WCSO

Jean-Pierre Trias was sentenced by Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge Donald Shelton Tuesday, records show. Trias pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in a plea agreement announced in June that required him to spend at least 30 years in prison.

Trias will serve between 30 and 36 years in prison for murdering Katherine Porter, his 53-year-old wife, on Jan. 10 in their Pittsfield Township home in the 4700 block of Hickory Pointe Boulevard.

At a court hearing on June 18, Trias admitted to the grisly crime. He told Shelton he stabbed Porter multiple times with two different knives — one of which was still in Porter when officers responded to the home to check on Trias the next day — and left her body in the bathroom of the home.

Her body was bruised, had numerous superficial cuts and three or four injuries that appeared to be bite marks, according to Washtenaw County medical examiners. Trias also suffered injuries that night — medical examiners said he had wounds on his face that appeared to be consistent with fingernail scratches.

The couple married in August 1995 and Trias once filed for divorce, but the couple reconciled.

Trias is a former Eastern Michigan University employee, where he was worked off and on from September 2003 until Dec. 31, 2012. He worked in the mathematics department as a part-time coordinator of math tutoring and testing services, while also serving as a graduate assistant.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Sat, Jul 20, 2013 : 12:07 a.m.

Kyle, there is so much more to the story. Including evidence of pre-meditation and how brutal the attack really was. He had so many better choices he could have made, yet, he preferred this one. To me, the motives of a sociopath are irrelevant.


Wed, Jul 24, 2013 : 12:13 a.m.

Thank you.

Kyle Feldscher

Sat, Jul 20, 2013 : 12:45 a.m.

Ann- I missed the actual hearing because there was a lot of breaking news that day. I've FOIA'd the report in order to give a definitive look at this case.


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 2:10 a.m.

...eye for an eye...


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 2:07 p.m.

......"makes the whole world blind." -Ghandi


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 3:43 a.m.

Prevention and protection is another story.


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 3:28 a.m.

I'd rather just have Kathie back. But, she wasn't like that, revenge and punishment, she was much more than that.


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 12:52 a.m.

This is terribly sad. But does anyone get a flashback to Jacques Renault from Twin Peaks? This is a bad comment.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 9:25 p.m.

Looking at the guy the lady sure put up a fight. Glad they got him locked up. Wow. How sad.

Mulberry Bank

Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 7:12 p.m.

So why did he kill her? Off his meds? Fit of 'passion'? What is the excuse for two knives and bite marks?


Thu, Jul 18, 2013 : 3:33 a.m.

There is no acceptable excuse.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 8:52 p.m.

With a guilty plea, doesn't the defendant simply answer the judge when he/she asks 'Are you guilty of 2nd degree murder?'? (Full disclosure, no idea if that's a double question mark sentence or not.) I don't think the defendant has to speak to motive, and that's sometimes the reason for a guilty plea.

Kyle Feldscher

Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 7:22 p.m.

Mulberry- Now that the court proceedings have wrapped up, I filed a FOIA request for the report today to try and find that out.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 5:10 p.m.

Just in case anyone asks about the conviction on 2nd degree murder (vs 1st degree): A conviction for 2nd degree indicates that the accused couldn't be proven to have had "previous intent" or planned to kill the victim. In other words, commonly, the accused is thought to have acted out of "passion." Frankly, I can't see the seeming justification because murder is a high crime regardless of the emotional state of the perp. It would be interesting to know if a finding of "2nd degree murder" has a built in limit on sentencing. Did this individual get fewer years (short of "life imprisonment") because he committed 2nd degree murder?


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 9:26 p.m.

murder is murder no matter what spin you put on it.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 5:54 p.m.

The sentence for 2nd degree murder in Michigan is any term of years up to life in prison (the greatest penalty possible under Michigan law). MCLA 750.317. The sentence for 1st degree murder is mandatory life in prison. MCLA 750.316. Second degree murder is generally thought to be less culpable because, by definition, the defendant did not act "willfully, deliberately and with premeditation." You may disagree with that policy, but it's a common, if not universal, distinction made in various legal jurisdictions.

Basic Bob

Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 5:02 p.m.

does anyone know what happens to the couple's house?


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 9:52 p.m.

It just sits there. Someone is taking care of it. Going to be hard to sell.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 9:30 p.m.

To the curious seekers? They will want to tour the house to see if they see anything. As for the morbid or wierded? They will try to buy the house. But if there are no children or heirs the house goes into probate by the state and the assets are liquidated and sold. If you look at the Ariel case from Cleveland no one on his side of the family wants anything to do with him or his assets. So if he is executed? His estate will go into probate, no pun intended and everything sold. Which will get interesting because the thrill seekers and the ones who love to handle stuff like this? Will go bonkers. So for now? Escrow, probate, auctioned off and what ever is left? Probably goes into a domestic help fund for battered women I guess. But this guy is still alive so unless he needs the money? The house sits if it is paid off. Otherwise the bank gets it.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 8:56 p.m.

I live just down the street from their house and I've been wondering what will happen, too. This will be a difficult house to sell.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 7:15 p.m.

I guess when I saw this post I just thought how what happens to their house is not really my concern and why anyone else except family would be concerned.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 5:32 p.m.

I'm not sure why you're currently at a -1 score. I was driving by on MI Ave recently and saw a sign for an estate sale. It made me wonder the same thing. I can't imagine how awful it must be for the family to have to go in there and take care I getting rid of stuff and working on selling the place. Also, I'm sure there is a lot of legal mumbo jumbo with figuring out who gets the money from the sale of the house, which items in the house belong to which estate/person/family. What an awful thing to have to go through.


Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 5:31 p.m.



Wed, Jul 17, 2013 : 4:41 p.m.

Thanks for the followup, Kyle.